Riverbed Accelerates Acceleration Business

WAN acceleration vendor Riverbed is aiming to accelerate its acceleration business with the release of its Riverbed Optimization System (RiOS) version 5.0. RiOS is the core system that power’s Riverbed’s acceleration hardware.

The latest release improves acceleration for Oracle 11 databases, SSL encryption as well as Microsoft Exchange 2007. While Riverbed claims it has some unique features, others in the acceleration business beg to differ.

“The big new feature is the RiOS Services Platform which is a protected partition to run additional services and application on (Riverbed’s) Steelhead appliances,” Harold Byun, senior product marketing manager at Riverbed told InternetNews.com. “We’re letting customers run wide area data services along with other best of breed apps that they can pick and choose from.”

The RiOS 5.0 release is the first Riverbed release since the RiOS 4.1 release last October. Byun noted that the 5.0 release was a major release because it has major new feature that did not exist in the platform before like the Services Platform.

Though the Services Platform is a major feature, Byun admitted that it does not accommodate custom applications that an enterprise may just be running in their own enterprise. Instead, it’s currently geared more toward ISVs that may be developing software that is more widely used and deployed. That said, Byun did say that going forward Riverbed would be looking at different way of addressing custom customer need as they arise.

According to at least one recent analyst firm report, Riverbed is the leader in the WAN optimization space. Byun was quick to point out that Riverbed expects to continue to benefit from its leadership position, picking up customers from its competitors.

Among those competitive customers that Byun noted Riverbed is taking are those from Juniper Networks. In late January, Juniper ended its DX application business, which is something that Riverbed claims they are capitalizing on. Byun claimed that Riverbed has had a ‘large handful’ of Juniper deals.

In an e-mailed statement, a Juniper spokesperson noted that Juniper has no comment on the claims of its’ competitors. Juniper’s spokesperson added that Juniper has not exited the application acceleration business based on the decision around the DX line.

“Juniper has a strong application acceleration business driven by the success of our WX application acceleration product line, and exemplified by our leader positions in both the Gartner Magic Quadrant and Forrester WAVE Report on WAN Optimization,” the spokesperson stated.

Riverbed has also made a very bold claim with RiOS 5.0, claiming they are the only vendor to fully accelerate Microsoft Exchange 2007. It’s a claim that does not sit well with networking giant Cisco.

“Yes, Cisco does accelerate the performance of Windows Exchange 2007 and we have tested our solution with many of Microsoft high volume applications including SharePoint, Exchange 2007, etc,” Baruch Deutsch, Director of Product Marketing for WAN Optimization group told InternetNews.com. “I could safely say tests illustrate that Cisco meets or beats competitors in the areas of performance, availability and security across Microsoft applications.”

In an announcement of its own, Cisco today actually made a joint announcement with Microsoft on WAN acceleration collaboration. As part of the announcement Cisco will offer Windows Server 2008 preinstalled on Cisco WAAS (Wide Area Application Services) appliances later this year.

“The technologies announced today will help boost performance and availability by making critical Windows Server 2008 services available to remote offices through integration with Cisco’s WAAS solution,” Bob Muglia, senior vice president, Microsoft Server and Tools Business division said in a statement.

Article courtesy of InternetNews.com

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